About Willie

Former CEO of international companies
Columbia Business School professor
Consultant to global organizations for creating winning strategies.
Creator of the Strategic Learning Process.
Author of the book, Strategic Learning

Willie's Blog Posts

The Latest Post

Five Dangerous Catchphrases That Lead Organizations Astray

“Bad terminology is the enemy of good thinking.” – Warren Buffett To solve a problem, we must identify its underlying cause. Flawed framing of the challenge can result in dire consequences. Think about the framing blunder that led to the collapse of General Motors. In the 1980s GM had captured over 50% of the North American auto market and seemed unassailable. Complacency set in and product quality slipped. Toyota and...

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Meet Willie

“If an organization can’t define its Winning Proposition in a simple way, it cannot claim to have a strategy.”
—from Strategic Learning

Willie Pietersen was raised in South Africa, and received a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford University. After practicing law, he embarked on an international business career. Over a period of twenty years he served as the CEO of multibillion-dollar businesses such as Lever Foods, Seagram USA, Tropicana and Sterling Winthrop’s Consumer Health Group.

In 1998, Pietersen was named Professor of the Practice of Management at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. He specializes in strategy and the leadership of change, and his methods and ideas, especially Strategic Learning, are widely applied within Columbia’s executive education programs, and also in numerous corporations.

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